Fulham 2-1 Sunderland
Soccer Special analysis
Fulham manager Martin Jol must do everything in his power to retain the services of Clint Dempsey and Mousa Dembele this summer.
So says Alan McInally, who told Soccer Saturday that the duo are crucial to Fulham's chances of building on a solid season.
McInally spoke out after watching the Cottagers overcome Sunderland 2-1 thanks to a superb 25-yard Dempsey free-kick and a deflected Dembele effort.
"Fulham were excellent," said McInally. "It's amazing, their home form. I saw them a couple of weeks ago against Everton and they were absolutely rotten and Everton beat them pretty easy, to be honest.
"Dembele is a really good midfield player; Dempsey's different class. He really has been fantastic for them. He scored a great free-kick.
"To be honest it could have ended 4-4. Although Martin O'Neill will be disappointed with the result, he will probably think that they did enough in terms of creating chances to maybe have gone away with something."
McInally added: "They can't lose them [Dempsey and Dembele]. They are that important - they really are. His goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer was really excellent as well today.
"To be fair on the other side Simon Mignolet made a few great saves but Schwarzer is a big player for them. Jol needs to make sure that he keeps him and, of course, add to the squad to try and make sure they are better than they were this year because away from home is probably where he's been most unhappy.
"Here at Craven Cottage they don't really seem to lose so many games and that's why they are still going to be a Premier division team."